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Uttoxeter Preview: Lochnagar can strike on handicap debut

The lightly-raced and unexposed Lochnagar looks weighted to take all the beating on handicap debut in the 2m hurdle at Uttoxeter today (1.20).

The gelding had some useful form on the flat when trained in Germany, winning twice and being placed on several occasions to earn an official rating of 80.

Lochnagar then joined trainer Venetia Williams at the start of the year and has shaped with bags of promise in four runs over hurdles without being knocked about.

The five-year-old particularly caught the eye on his third start when fourth of 16 to the now 130-rated Chase The Wind at Wincanton, and shaped like a sure fire future winner last time out when fifth of 14 to Taj Badalandabad at Chepstow.

The latter was Lochnanagr’s first run for 196 days, and the son of Sholokhov travelled strongly up with the pace until weakening to from home to be beaten 21 lengths.

Jockey Aidan Coleman allowed Lochnagar to come home in his own time once it was clear he would not be winning, and the winner is a useful sort who has gone on to follow-up in good style under a penalty to give the form a solid look.

Lochanagar has been allotted an opening mark of 112 on the back of that effort, and that could well underestimate his ability.

To me he looks the tyoe who could take off in handicaps, and this looks a lovely opening for Lochnagar to notch a first success over the obstacles.

In the 2m 4f handicap hurdle (2.50), Arden Denis could be thrown-in at the weights judged on his debut run in a bumper.

The Tom Symonds trained gelding finished a keeping on five length third of 10 to Monbeg Theatre at Market Rasen, and the winner is a useful sort who has won his last two races over hurdles and is now rated 124.

The runner up Gone Forever is also held in high regard and went on to bolt up on hurdling debut by nine lengths.

That is very strong form and makes Arden Denis look potentially very well-treated off a mark of just 78.

Although the five-year-old has failed to cut any ice in four starts over hurdles, it looks significant that the son of Generous was heavily backed on handicap debut last time out when sixth of 10 at this venue.

Nothing went right for Arden Denis in that race as he was slowly away and got put off by a fallen hurdle, but the market support suggests that connections believe he is better than what he has shown so far and this looks a very winnable contest if that proves to be the case.

Selections:
12.20: Bantam
12.50: Grand Vision
1.20: Lochnagar (NAP)
1.50: Moss Cloud
2.20: Storm Of Swords
2.50: Arden Denis (NB)
3.20: Ballykan